General Characteristics
 - Rice is the staple in the diet for much of the world. It runs a close second to wheat in its importance as a food cereal in the human diet. About 670 Million Metric Tons of rice are grown annually compared to 680 MMT for wheat, 440 MMT for oil seeds, and 1090 MMT for coarse grains (corn, sorghum, barley, oats, rye, millet and mixed grains.). Rice production has more than doubled in the last 40 years. Most of the increase in production has been a result of improved field yields. Acreage planted in rice has only increased about 30 percent. Rice is best grown in flooded fields and so acreage is limited by soil type and supply of water.